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‘It’s better fourth, third or second!’ Mourinho takes swipe at rivals after Europa success

Date Posted,May 24, 2017

Jose Mourinho took a swipe at his Premier League rivals, insisting he would rather qualify for the Champions League by winning the Europa League than finishing second, third or fourth.

The Red Devils secured a place at European football’s top table with a comfortable 2-0 win over Ajax in the Stockholm final on Wednesday night.

Paul Pogba and Henrikh Mkhitaryan scored the goals as United showed all their experience against a youthful Dutch outfit.

Mourinho’s side had missed out via their league positioning, having only managed a sixth place finish in his debut season at Old Trafford.

A delighted Mourinho celebrates (Photo: BPI/REX/Shutterstock)

United eventually finished seven points off the top four, and a massive 17 behind second place Tottenham.

But Mourinho insists he wouldn’t swap places, despite what he called “my most difficult season as a manager.”

“It’s the end of a very difficult season, but I think a very very good season,” declared Mourinho.

“We prefer this way than finish fourth, third or second, we finish this way.

“We got the objective of getting back to the Champions League, and we get a very important title. A title that closes the lot, an important title in world football.

“We always thought we could win the Europa League and of course we are very happy.”

Jose Mourinho celebrates with the trophy (Photo: Reuters)

United held a youthful, creative Ajax side at arm’s length throughout.

Peter Bosz’s side, who had scored a hatful of goals on their way to the final, never looked like troubling the United defence.

Bosz called the match “boring” and hit out at United’s “long ball tactics”.

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But Mourinho laughed off any criticism from his counterpart stating: “We played intelligently, we did it in a comfortable way. We were much stronger than them.

“If you are dominant in the air you go long. There are lots of poets in football but poets don’t win many titles.

“We knew where we were better than them. We tried to exploit their weaknesses, we did that very well since the first minute and we got what we deserved.”

Mourinho would later tell Sky Italia: “It was a game like Inter vs Bayern (2010 Champions League final), where you know it’s in the bag from the first minute.”

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